Since we launched our Roaming Bill Shock Strategy Survey last week, we have had a lot of interest in how Operators deal with the various Bill Shock scenarios. The results of our survey are going to be available to all Operators who take part in one months time.
One of the most common issues is the press and how they handle Roaming Bill Shock stories (see todays example below). But there are also issues with some handsets, transparency measures and data roaming packages.
If you work for a mobile operators Roaming department, your view on how Operators can best handle Roaming Bill Shock would be greatly appreciated. ROCCO always shares all of the results in an aggregated format respecting each operators anonymity. A great way to learn from others experiences.
An associate, who is a regular traveller across various European countries and China, told me of a recent outrageous bill that he received from his telco provider, to an estimated tune of US$4,000! Despite his pleas and explanation that there was no alert from the telco sent to his Blackberry which was silently downloading heavy file attachments in the background, the customer service was unforgiving and unwilling to relent on the bill payment. The bill is still currently in dispute.
Bill shocks are not uncommon as friends who have travelled overseas have complained of similar situations. And while telcos claim that they act in the best interests of customers by alerting them, they are still more than happy to pound hefty charges onto unsuspecting travellers, using extensive overloaded legal jargon agreements as their right to bill you. Legal to bill? Yes. Ethical pricing? It is daylight robbery.
With the rise of the frequent traveller moving across multiple countries and the insatiable demand to be connected with convenience, is the data roaming market a market ripe for disruption, especially for the huge increase of smartphone global travellers?
The article further comments that “EU regulations have presently limit roaming spend to €50 per trip”. This is great for EU countries but I have been unable to find any regulations set in other parts of the world, especially for Asia. And knowing the differences in telco development stages for each Asian country, it will take a very long time before an established regulatory framework on data roaming pricing will come into place.